Original Australian Lithgow P1907 SMLE Bayonet No.1 Mk.I Dated 1921 with 1943 Mangrovite Scabbard
Original Item: Only One Available. Purchased directly from a private collector, this is a very hard to find Australian Lithgow Armory manufactured P-1907 Bayonet for the No.1 MkIII Enfield rifle, often called the SHT.LE, SMLE, S.M.L.E., "Smelly" etc. It is dated 1921, but was still in service during WW2, and it was fit into a MANGROVITE made scabbard, dated 1943, which is also very hard to find today.
The Pattern 1907 bayonet replaced the earlier P-1903 bayonet, which was a double edged bayonet based on the P-1888 bayonet of the Lee-Metford rifle. The P-1903 had been developed for the "Long" Magazine Lee-Enfield, which was 49.6 inches in overall length. With the introduction of the Short Magazine Lee-Enfield in 1904, the 12 inch bayonet was no longer considered long enough for the 44.6 inch SMLE, so the 17 inch bladed 1907 was developed.
In it's original form, the P-1907 had a hooked guard (quillon), which was then removed from the pattern in early WWI due to the questionable use and increased production time. Unlike the 1903, the 1907 had a single edged blade that was less wide, but made of thicker stock.
The blade markings on this example are clearly visible, with 1907 / I inside a shield, under the Australian Commonwealth 7-sided star. The left ricasso is marked 1 '21 / LITHGOW, indicating manufacture at the Lithgow Arsenal in January of 1921. Later bayonets would bear the marking MA. On the other ricasso it is stamped with the seven-pointed Commonwealth Star around "A" for Australian government acceptance. There is also the large 'X' blade bending mark.
Lithgow Pattern 1907 bayonets were numbered to rifles on the pommel. The pommel of this bayonet shows it was a ‘A’ series produced blade and is marked A / 74022. There is no "R" on the hilt spine of this example, so it does not appear to have been refurbished for use in the 1950s. Blade condition is very good, and it still has a good amount of the original finish. Grip panels show wear, as expected on a bayonet of this age.
The bayonet comes in a WWII Australian Number 1 Type II brown leather scabbard, manufactured in 1943 and in excellent condition. The scabbard locket and chape retain most of their original phosphate finish. The leather body of the scabbard is stamped MANGROVITE ‘43 and (Arrow B) over W, locket and chape stamped OA. Sydney-area tannery, Mangrovite Belting Pty. Ltd. was in operation from 1913 until the 1990s.
This is a great chance to get an original Australian bayonet to complement a Lithgow-manufactured SMLE, or to complete an SMLE bayonet collection. Bayonets such as this do not turn up often at all.
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